Fourth Sunday of Easter
From the Pastor’s Desk
April 30, 2023
“Amen, amen, I say to you, I am the gate for the sheep.”
Brothers and Sisters,
Who is Jesus?
If you’ve looked through the Gospels, you know Jesus has answered that question many times directly, usually leading with, “I am.” As in, “I am the good shepherd…the way, the truth, and the life. I am the Resurrection and the life…the bread of life. I am the light of the world…the vine.” These declarations validate Jesus as God’s equal. And as we know, many couldn’t handle this truth; as such, they charged Jesus with blasphemy and nailed him to the cross.
Compared to many of the affirmations above about His true identity, today’s Gospel, “I am the gate.” might appear to fall short at first reading. Admittedly, I immediately think of a rickety entrance needing repairs or at least a bit of WD-40. Yet, our heavenly Father, who serves as a gatekeeper, allows people to enter into union with him through the gate —through Jesus. (Think about it. How often do we end our prayers, “Through Christ our Lord, Amen”?) Still, this account from John tells us that many tried to get in by other means, which Jesus refers to as thieves and robbers, because they intended to exploit the sheep for their benefit. But Jesus’ believers are assured of His protection.
This week, take this question to prayer, and ask yourself, “When have I gone “through the gate”? I’ll offer a hint. We have successfully entered through when we live, serve, or worship in Jesus’ name or by his authority. When we enter the Church for Mass, the Sacraments, prayer, and worship in Adoration in our Chapel of the Good Shepherd, we accept our Lord’s invitation to spend time in His presence.
And naturally, if we live through Christ, we will discover whom the Lord is calling us to be and how we ought to live out our life, our vocation! Please let’s keep each other in prayer this week, too, asking God to remind us to encourage one another to walk through the gate so that we might live our lives purposefully and for the Lord.
Our Parish will celebrate Mothers’ Day on the weekend of May 14, when we will thank God for our mothers, grandmothers, godmothers, and the many mother figures who have helped us on the path of faith.
Please consider including these amazing women, living or deceased, in our annual Mother’s Day Novena of Masses by visiting our website or by clicking here.
Our annual May Crowning will also occur on May 14, after our 9 am Mass in our beautiful Rosary Garden. All those joining the ceremony are encouraged to bring flowers.
In closing, we are thrilled to welcome many of our youngest parishioners to receive their First Holy Communion next weekend! Please pray for them and their families. May our God nurture and protect all our children through Christ our Lord. Amen.